Studies have shown that the bacteria in our gut play a very important role when it comes to the development and progression of autoimmune conditions.
Researchers have discovered that MS patients have a distinct microbiome compared to their healthy peers. One specific study divided RRMS patients into groups that separated those with active disease and those in remission. They found there was less diverse gut bacteria in the patients in active relapse compared to those who stay in remission for longer periods of time.
One cause of this gut bacteria imbalance is caused by an overgrowth of candida, a type of bacteria that lives throughout different regions of the body. Even though it’s natural to have a certain level of these types of bacterial colonies in the body, problems arise when the levels grow to unhealthy levels.
Not all gut bacteria are created equal!
Some of the good bacteria in the gut help to digest food, some manufacture specific vitamins, and other strains of bacteria even help protect the lining of the digestive tract. When there is an imbalance, too many strains of certain types of bacteria outnumber the beneficial strains. This can cause digestive problems and is an irritant to the cells that line the digestive tract. When left untreated, any irritation in the digestive tract can lead to inflammation and something called leaky gut syndrome, which can be linked to autoimmune reactions.
Anything that irritates or stresses the digestive system can lead to systemic, wide-spread inflammation. By controlling inflammation in the digestive tract, we can begin the process of bringing balance back into the body and potentially stop the immune system from misfiring.
To learn more about the different underlying causes of candida and how balance gut bacteria, visit the second module of my free online program: A Holistic Approach to Living with Multiple Sclerosis.